This report, from last month, is still in my head for a few reasons. But this in particular from Esther Fung and Heather Haddon:
For its new stores, Amazon is targeting new developments and occupied stores with leases ending soon. It could, for instance, consider a portion of a vacated Kmart, a person familiar with the matter said. Stores in the new grocery brand could be in strip centers as well as open-air shopping centers, the people said, and will be about 35,000 square feet, smaller than the typical 60,000-square-foot supermarket.
Amazon continues not just to run such former behemoths out of business, they then take up residency in their carcasses almost as an explicit insult. It's as if to say, "you can claim you lost because you have this expensive retail weighing you down, but guess what? We're going to make it work to show you the real reason why you lost." Also:
Amazon doesn’t want restrictions on the type of goods it may sell at its stores and wants the ability to change the store and sell health and beauty products for instance, the people familiar said. Leases in shopping centers often include limitations so that businesses complement rather than cannibalize each other.
This is insult to above injury. Also, a contagion.
It is unclear whether these new stores will be cashierless, but they will be heavily tilted to customer service and pickup capabilities, according to the people. Amazon is also looking to have some control over the attached parking lot to speed shoppers’ ability to get groceries, the people said.Read more...